Why people don’t want to wear discreet hearing aids

20 04 2017

listening with discreet hearing aids

Have you begged and pleaded with your spouse or parent to wear their discreet hearing aids, only for them to “forget” or stubbornly refuse.

I was playing around with Google search, and some specific hearing aid questions caught my eye:

  • Why won’t my father wear his hearing aids?
  • My mum refuses to wear her hearing aids, help!
  • How do I cope with my spouse refusing to wear his hearing aids?
  • My husband refuses to wear his very expensive hearing aids, why did we buy them?

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11 interesting facts about hearing aid devices

13 04 2017

hearing aid devices

Did you know as early as the 13th century people with hearing loss were using hollowed-out horns from animals as primitive hearing devices?

The first ‘official’ mention of hearing aids ever recorded was in a book published by an Italian physician / scientist in 1588. In the book, he wrote about hearing aids made from wood, shaped like the ears of animals known to have superior hearing.

Isn’t it amazing how far technology has come? The first wearable hearing aid was developed in 1938 by electronic manufacturers in Chicago. But it took another 20 years to create a hearing aid that could completely fit behind the ear.

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The limitations and benefits of hearing aids

6 04 2017

benefits of hearing aids

The limitations and benefits of hearing aids – The real story

Hearing aids cannot magically restore a person’s ability to hear; rather they aid you in hearing better.

Hearing aids have been shown to improve a users’ quality of life, specifically improving communication in relationships, as well as providing the user with a sense of control.

However, as with most things in life, there are benefits and limitations to wearing hearing aids.

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Hands off our hearing aids!

28 07 2014

social media 2

North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has announced proposals to withdraw the provision of NHS-funded hearing aids for adults with mild to moderate age-related hearing loss!

This would be devastating for people with hearing loss, leaving thousands of local residents unable to communicate in their day-to-day lives. If the cuts go ahead in North Staffordshire, who will be next? We could be looking at millions of people who struggle to hear being denied NHS hearing aids.

We’re calling on anyone who values free NHS hearing aids to join us in the fight to stop these changes!

Link to cause – Hands off our hearing aids!





Access

25 06 2011

Arlene Romoff speaks of her experience of hearing loss, advocacy, and her bilateral cochlear implants. The interviewer is also deaf, and is using an FM system to hear Arlene. The interview is in six parts.

You can hop over to Arlene’s blog and buy her book ‘Listening Closely – A Journey to Bilateral Hearing’ from Amazon.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6





The Mirror Crack’d

7 01 2010

One of my concerns about the cochlear implant, and I suspect quite a common one for CI newbies, is the size of the thing. It looks quite big. It’s quite a collection of objects to have on the back of your head and looks very conspicuous when you have no or little hair – I’ve seen quite a few young men on the London underground with a CI stuck to their head. I’ve always thought it looks quite futuristic, like something out of a modern-day Star Trek. The CI comes in two parts. This is the part that sits on the ear and the round part is a magnet, which sits on the head behind the ear;

This is the internal part of the CI. The wires are electrodes which are threaded into the cochlea. The round part is the magnet which connects through the skin to the external magnet.

Wouldn’t it be great if the external part was designed to look like a telephone or something humorous. Listen up, CI companies! Cochlear now have a white CI, the Nucleus 5, and it looks gorgeous. Unfortunately it still looks like a hearing aid and I don’t like people’s reactions to them. Interesting comments from CI users have been that observers are interested, they think it’s some sort of bluetooth device, and this leads to useful conversations, educational and sometimes directly beneficial to the observer … who may happen to be deaf but has not seen a CI or heard of one.

Hearwear: The Future of Hearing was an exhibition held at the V&A London in 2006. The RNID had commissioned 15 product designers to come up with innovative hearing products. The results were prototypes and not available on the market in 2006 …. that was 4 years ago …. I wonder what is happening? Alloy were seeking manufacturers in 2005 for its SoundSpace product. ReSound have a new aid design called Be. I contacted both companies to get an update on hearing aid design. No replies were forthcoming.

You might be interested to read about the Carina on Steve’s blog Deafness and hearing aids. This is a new, fully implantable CI. Looking at this CI, it appears to be for people with a moderate to severe hearing loss, rather than profound. Perhaps in ten years time, they will have improved the technology enough to offer this to profoundly deaf recipients. There are also different kinds of implants: auditory, penetrating, and hybrid. Perhaps there may be developments there.

Back to the current day. It is possible to purchase ‘Skinits‘, customised plastic film to stick on your CI and ring the changes with your outfit or occasion. Cool. Some CIs come with different casing colours that you can swap around. You can also purchase Tube Riders to decorate hearing aids or implants. You can even get a bluetooth headset to work with your CI.

At my CI consultation, I had been told all CIs are the same. I had initially jumped for Cochlear’s Nucleus 5 because it was the newest and flashiest of the lot. I assumed newest was best. But when they said the performance of all brands was the same, alarm bells rang in my head. I did some research and spoke to a number of people, some of whom were electrical engineers. The results are posted on my Cochlear Implants blog page. If you’re considering a cochlear implant, go check this information out! It’s important to know about CI performance – because your surgeon won’t tell you this – surgeons are not experts on CIs. So… based on this new information, I have now finally chosen my preferred brand of CI. I chose Advanced Bionics for their superior performance and better future hardware and software prospects. Hello AB fans, are you out there?





Living life out loud

30 12 2009

I came across Bonnie Cherry’s story and it brought a tear to my eye. Bonnie lives in Lawrence, Kansas. She had a brain tumour and the removal of this meant she lost her hearing. She can’t get hearing aids because her insurance won’t pay for it. Bonnie has fought a lot of side effects from the surgeries as her mom says…

…a soft spot in her skull, paralyzed vocal cords and the inability to speak, useless and atrophied muscles in her neck and shoulder, constant excruciating pain, a paralyzed tongue and the inability to swallow food or liquid without choking, scars not only from the surgery to remove the tumor and the nerves it was wrapped around on her brain stem, but other scars from the tissue transplants they had to use to patch her up again, and another at her throat to let her speak at all. She couldn’t hear out of one ear, and the other was getting worse all the time. They said she would need a feeding tube for the rest of her life.

Throughout all this, Bonnie has remained cheerful and positive. She has never given up and has carried on fighting. I love seeing that kind of spirit in people.

We often forget how lucky we are in the UK to be able to get a referral from a doctor and with that, walk into an audiology centre and be given hearing aids for free. They are upgraded for free. They are repaired for free. If we lose them, they are replaced for free. If you medically qualify for a cochlear implant, that’s free too.

Aren’t we lucky? I know we moan a lot online about the shortcomings of the NHS and the woeful underfunding of the audiology departments, but at least the service is there for us. At least we have got access to services and medical products to improve our hearing.

Hop on over to Vinland Valley Nursery to read Bonnie’s story. The Facebook group for Cherry is named “The Bonnie Cherry Ladies Hearing Aid Society.”